The 42nd Annual BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival was reinvented this year into an all new virtual destination, through a partnership with global digital production company, MediaMonks.
The festival proved to be an unforgettable experience that included compelling performances, inspiring visual artist collaborations and interactive new event technology that allowed for intimate experiences between fans and their favorite artists. For the past 41 years, BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival has presented and celebrated global music icons, legendary jazz artists, chart-topping indie bands, gravity-defying dance troupes, large-scale film projects and visual art installations to the public for free and has become one of the city’s foremost cultural attractions and the passport to summer.
This year’s multi-platform event was held Saturday, July 25 and Sunday, July 26 and was hosted by comedian and actress Michelle Buteau. The festival took place across YouTube and Facebook and on BRIC’s TV Channels. For more information, visit bricartsmedia.org/live.
|The performance lineup showcased musical and visual artists from Brooklyn and around the world including: Grammy award-winning rapper, actor, philanthropist and activist Common with Robert Glasper and Karriem Riggins, DJ and co-founding member of “The Roots” Questlove, GRAMMY award-winning singer/songwriter Lila Downs, Nigerian singer/songwriter, composer and actress Yemi Alade, GRAMMY award-winning singer/songwriter, actress and activist Angélique Kidjo, Caribbean soca group KES, Brooklyn-based singer/songwriter Madison McFerrin, rapper and actress Junglepussy, Puerto Rican pop duo Buscabulla, and Swedish singer/songwriter The Tallest Man on Earth.
Showing its multidisciplinary approach to arts and entertainment, BRIC also commissioned visual artists Shantell Martin and Glendalys Medina to collaborate with performers Madison McFerrin and Buscabulla, respectively, to create stunning original works of art inspired by the artists’ musical performances.
Surprising virtual attendees in what proved to be an exhilarating moment, BRIC premiered a reimagined version of the Roy Ayers classic “We Live in Brooklyn, Baby,” performed and recorded by over a dozen Brooklyn-based musicians to pay homage to the borough’s legendary resilience, creativity, and artistic history. Formed by Paul Wilson of Quantic and BRIC Senior Music Producer Lia Camille Crockett, the performers included Quantic; BRIC JazzFest alums Melanie Charles, Keyon Harrold, Melvin Gibbs; as well as J. Hoard, David Frazier, Parker McAllister, Nikara Warren, Domenica Fossati, Luisa Bastidas, Elizabeth Pupo-Walker, Lou Tides and Genesis Pan Groove. The performance invoked strong feelings of Brooklyn pride, and demonstrated that not even a global pandemic can keep Brooklyn down.
“The critical role artists play in helping us through challenging times was further reinforced over the Festival’s weekend,” said Kristina Newman-Scott, BRIC’s President. “BRIC is proud to have brought hundreds of thousands of people the opportunity to feel so intimately connected with artists from across the world.”
Highlights from the two-day celebration included: Generating over 400,000 cross-platform views on YouTube and Facebook, and reaching 500k Cable households in Brooklyn.
2020 BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival host, actress and comedian Michelle Buteau, opened the event speaking about the history of the festival. WATCH >>
Rapper and actor Common performed “I Used to Love H.E.R.”, along with Robert Glasper and Karriem Riggins at the Saban Theater in L.A. WATCH >>
Carribean soca group KES gave a rousing performance of “Hello.” WATCH >>
Grammy award-winning Latin singer/songwriter Lila Downs performed her hit “La Campanera,” much to the delight of fans. WATCH >>
Brooklyn-native rapper Junglepussy got the audience rowdy with her performance of “Trader Joe.” WATCH >>
Singer-songwriter, actress and activist Angélique Kidjo and Nigerian Afropop singer-songwriter Yemi Alade teamed up for a duet performance that wowed the audience. WATCH >>
Visual artist Shantell Martin, known for her large-scale black-and-white drawings, created a painting in the Prospect Park Bandshell (the festival’s usual home), inspired by Madison McFerrin’s soundscapes. WATCH >>
Nuyorican conceptual visual artist Glendalys Medina created a motion animation piece inspired by music and art to Puerto Rican pop duo Buscabulla’s “Nydia.” WATCH >>
DJ and The Root’s co-founder Questlove performed a rousing DJ set to close out the first night of the festival on a high note. WATCH >>
Audiences were able to utilize MediaMonk’s event technology to interact with the artists and add personalized messages that showed up on screen overlays.
President and CEO of The Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation David Ehrenberg, was honored and presented with the 2020 BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Award during the festival, for his commitment to the future of the borough. WATCH >>
BRIC premiered a reimagined version of the Roy Ayers classic “We Live In Brooklyn, Baby,” performed by over a dozen Brooklyn-based musicians who paid homage to the creativity, history, resilience and attitude of the borough. WATCH >>
Those wishing to support BRIC’s mission of celebrating the arts were given the opportunity to donate to the BRIC Creative Future Relief fund, either online (bricartsmedia.org/relief) or through a text to donate campaign by texting BRICrelief to 44-321. From now until July 31st, every donation is matched 1:1 by the Howard Gilman foundation.View the 42nd annual BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival here:
-Saturday, July 25 (Day 1)-
-Sunday, July 26 (Day 2)-